In periods of high heat you may become dehydrated and your body may overheat, leading to heat exhaustion or heatstroke.
Heatstroke can develop if heat exhaustion is left untreated, but can also occur suddenly and without warning.
Heatstroke can result in death or irreversible damage.
The following advice and information will help keep you and your family safe during a heat wave.
Symptoms of heat exhaustion
- Muscle weakness or cramps.
- Pale skin.
- High temperature.
- Nausea and vomiting.
Symptoms of heatstroke
- Intense thirst.
- Convulsions and loss of consciousness.
How you can limit the effects of a heat wave
- Avoid going out during the hottest part of the day (11am-3pm).
- Avoid strenuous outdoor activity.
- If you must go outside try to stay in the shade, wear a hat and light loose-fitting clothes preferably cotton.
- Stay inside in the coolest room.
- Close curtains.
- Keep windows closed if room is cooler than outside. Open them when the temperature inside rises and at night for ventilation.
- Take cool showers or baths, splash your face and back of your neck with cool water several times a day.
- Drink regularly even if you do not feel thirsty, water and fruit juices are best.
- Avoid alcohol, tea and coffee.
- Eat normally, but try to eat more cold food particularly salads and fruit as they contain water.
- Seek advice from your doctor, pharmacist or NHS Direct if you are worried, especially if you are taking medication or have unusual symptoms.